Ducati Hypermotard 796

ducati-hypermotard-796-sFull details on the the smaller cc Hypermotard from Ducati, the 796. ducati-hypermotard-796-10

Ducati Hypermotard 796

The Ducati Hypermotard family expands for 2010 with the addition of the new Hypermotard 796. The new Hypermotard 796 features a lower seat height and brand new 803cc motor. The 796 mixes Ducati’s twin-cylinder power and sportbike heredity with the lightweight and minimalist supermotard concept.

Hours after its first showing at the 2005 Milan International Motorcycle show, the Hypermotard was awarded “Best of Show” and became an instant hit in Italy, where motorcycles are as much a lifestyle choice as they are transportation. Since then, its out-of-the-ordinary design went on to win converts around the world. The Hypermotard range  is now extended with the hyper-agile 796.


The Hypermotard’s rigidly triangulated and now lighter Trellis frame and chassis geometry is still stylised by the distinctive high fender at the front and dual under-seat mufflers at the rear.

At 825mm (32.5in), the seat height of the 796 is 20mm (0.8in) lower than the 1100. The upright seating position offers a good view of the road ahead, while the wide handlebars make the bike flickable. The 796 weighs in at just 167kg (368lb), partly achieved by the lightweight engine, but also by continued chassis development that includes redesigned top and bottom fork clamps and an improved frame layout which eliminates almost all of the forged elements previously used with the 1100.

The lightened frame retains its torsional strength, while 17″ wheels by Enkei are produced in lightweight aluminium to keep the unsprung weight low and handling, braking and acceleration performances high. The same 3.50 front and 5.50 rear rim sizes as the 1100 are used with Bridgestone tyres.


Suspension duties up front are taken care of by a pair of  43mm Marzocchi forks, while the rear is managed by a Sachs suspension unit featuring adjustable spring preload and return damping, allowing adjustments for riding style or load. The rear operates through a similar progressive link to the 1100 and uses the signature Hypermotard single-sided swingarm.

Twin 305mm semi-floating discs gripped by radially mounted 4-piston Brembo callipers provide powerful and progressive front-end braking, while the rear is equipped with a 245mm disc and 2-piston calliper, also by Brembo.



The 796 engine isn’t just a ‘stroked’ 696 – it’s a completely brand new Desmodue power unit. A new crankshaft designed around lightweight 848-type flywheels, spins with a 66mm stroke instead of the 696’s 57.2mm, helping to maximise power to   81hp (59.6kW) @ 8000rpm and torque to 55.7lb-ft (75.5Nm) @ 6250rpm while maintaining the  character of all Desmodromic L-Twins. An oil cooler similar to the 1100 is used. The  redesigned crankcases save 1.2kg (2.64lb) over the 696 castings, and are responsible for the major part of the 1.9kg (4.2lb) total saving over the 696 power unit. The clutch and alternator outer casings of the new engine are finished in an 1100-style carbon grey.

Breathing through a revised airbox intake duct and fed through 45mm throttle bodies, the 803cc swept volume is compressed to a ratio of 11:1 – compared to the 696’s 10.7:1 – before being injected and ignited with Siemens controlled electronics. The 2-1-2 catalytic exhaust system uses a pre-silencer configuration with twin lambda probes providing  Euro 3 conformity. The system’s lightweight and compact design is achieved by using 1mm thick tubing and terminates in Ducati’s trademark twin under-seat, black exhaust mufflers, contrasted with aluminium end caps.

An APTC ‘wet’ clutch gives a ‘slipper’ type action that prevents destabilizing of the rear-end under aggressive down-shifting and also gives the extra benefit of a super-light feel at the lever. The 21-plate oil-bath clutch (11 friction and 10 steel) represents a power-enhancing weight reduction over the ‘dry’ system as well as having a quieter operation and requiring less maintenance. The new Hypermotard 796 engine combines all recent advances in Ducati’s ongoing design, manufacture and production quality campaigns to offer competitive service intervals of 12,000 kilometres (or 7,500 miles).


Controls and instrumentation

While its motard feeling is set by wide bars and handguards, the 796’s  image is further characterised with the orange back-lit Streetfighter-style digital instrumentation and switchgear. The slim-line switch bodies houses the switches and buttons and features a unique weapons-like ‘trigger catch’ that slides down to cover the starter button when the kill-switch is activated. The display provides an extensive amount of data including: speed, revs, time, maintenance schedule, oil temperature, oil pressure warning light, battery voltage, fuel reserve warning light, reserve fuel trip, turn indicator light, neutral light, lap time memory storage, automatic light-off function after 60 seconds with the key on and immobiliser status. In addition, it can list lap times recorded by using the high-beam flash button as a stopwatch.

The instrument display also doubles as a control panel for the activation of the Ducati Data Analyser (DDA) system, which is available as an accessory from Ducati Performance. The 796 has been built ‘system-ready’ for the data acquisition kit, which consists of a special DDA software and memory key that slots into a plug under the seat. The same plug also doubles as the connection for a handy new battery charger available as an accessory from Ducati Performance.


Integral construction Brembo master cylinders are used for both the clutch and brake systems. They are fitted with  4-point adjustable levers that provide control for all hand sizes and the APTC clutch offers a light lever action.

Ducati found an innovative solution for the Hypermotard 1100 mirrors and this has been maintained on the new 796. The challenge of maintaining a clean look around the handlebar area, motivated the design of the folding mirror concept which is based on the handguards typically found on off-road bikes. Flipped out for high visibility street mode and easily folded in for a quick change to ‘Hypermode’, the mirror handguard assemblies also integrate the LED directional indicators for an even cleaner front-end.

The headlamp uses a compact lighting shape which blends with the single piece nose fairing and front fender moulding, while the rear light employs a  strip of LEDs enhanced by a high diffusion lens shaped into the tailpiece. The same LEDs are intensified under braking. The front directional indicators also employ the latest in LED technology for illumination, and are integrated into the handguards which support the foldable rear view mirrors.

Tailpiece The high intensity LED rear light assembly is moulded into a unique tailpiece positioned high behind the seat. The supporting structure has been designed so that the under tray of the tailpiece is formed perfectly to offer a sturdy pair of pillion grab-handles. This not only helps to merge the rear light into the Hypermotard styling but also provides a safe grip for the passenger.


The new 796 comes in an urban-style Dark finish with matte black tank and beak section, black frame and black wheels or, alternatively, matte white tank with contrasting matte black beak, black frame and black wheels. For the purists, an 1100 look-alike red tank with matching beak section, red frame and black wheels keeps the 796 in traditional livery.






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